christianity

A Godly Woman Part 1

I have been asked on multiple occasions to be a mentor to young women. I am always excited when asked to do so because it shows that these women are seeking something different than what this world wants to offer. They are usually looking for someone to come along side them and to speak up; to show them what being a Godly woman looks like, because face it, we all know what we see on T.V. And instagram is not what our soul desires to strive for.

Where is the best place to start? The Bible. I plan on sharing what I have learned over the years with you. I don’t claim to be an expert. I just want to share what is on my heart.

Titus 2 verses 3 to 5 is a great place to start.

3. Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good,

4. and so train the young women to love their husbands and children,

5. to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.

As I am now considered an older woman, I feel I am called to teach the younger women to do just what these verses say.

We are to be pure, respectful, and diligent. We are called to love our husbands and children; to be kind, self-controlled. Do we need to say everything that comes to mind? No. When I want to speak out and I know it may be hurtful, or not have the other persons best interest at heart, I try to stop myself. I seek God and see if there is a different way to say it, if at all. In doing this one act of stepping back from the situation, I have seen my own life change in not needing to feel like I have to speak all the time. Are there times when I do speak up? Absolutely. Sometimes I have had to be very truthful with people, but I try to do it in love.

This leads me to the next point. A Godly woman controls her tongue.

James 1:19-27

James 3

Specifically James 1:19 and 26 say James 1:19  Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; James 1:26  If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless.

We are to keep our tongue in check. James 3 is a whole chapter on the tongue and how it can give blessing and praise to God one moment and in the other moment curse and reject people who were created by Him. (James 3:9)

Controlling our tongue doesn’t mean we stay silent and hold a grudge, giving our offender the silent treatment. Having spirit-led self control, means we give control of ourself to the Spirit, so we no longer feel like we have to say something. It’s controlling our actions as well, knowing that our waiting in silence will affect our physical actions, so we can still show love as we wait patiently to see when and/if we should speak up.

James is one of my favorite books in the Bible. There are some meaty words of declaration and ways to live a godly life in this book. It’s a small book with a powerful punch. I recommend reading it this coming week and see how you can take its truths to heart and watch as it transforms your mind and soul.

Reminder: a Godly woman is pure, respectful, diligent, and controls her tongue.

There are many more aspects of a Godly woman and I plan on taking the next few weeks to write about them.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for the examples that you have given us in your word of Godly women and what being a righteous woman is all about. May we seek these truths out and show us where we are lacking.

marriage

New Year: Day 1 Praying

“A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” Proverbs 15:1

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It’s New Year’s Eve and my family has all been sick with stuffy noses, sore throats, itchy-watery eyes – classic cold flu symptoms. Some of us have been sick since Christmas. Some are just starting the unwelcome illness. Regardless, I have been doing a lot of thinking lately as the old year winds down and the new year begins.

I am not one that makes New Year’s resolutions. Most of the time the resolutions fail, leaving people feeling worse than they did before. However, I do think goals are a good thing especially when you go to God first to ask what things He would change in your life.

My husband and I get asked one consistent question quite regularly…”What are your parenting secrets? It’s usually followed by a similar question of, “How do I get a marriage like yours?” We usually laugh it off, but try to give some advice. These are serious questions and the short answer is…God.

I feel that our society is lacking relationship. I see it everyday. We are so busy and even when we think we are doing something “good” for someone and/or our communities, usually our close family relationships suffer as a result.

Our motto at Cherith Brook Baja is Love the One in Front of You. I believe its what Jesus did and He is our example. He spent time with people. He ate with them, listened to them, spoke into their lives, and gave them what they needed. He didn’t give them what they thought they needed – He gave what He knew they needed.

All that to say, I want to encourage families to have real relationship. Put the cell phone down, spend time loving on, talking and listening to, and feasting with your families.

So, instead of a resolution, I would like to do 30 days of praying for our children and spouse. If you would like to join me in this, each day I will post what I am praying for specifically. You will begin to get a glimpse of what our family has done over the years to get a Godly marriage and to have three kids that walk with the Lord. Please understand, we are not perfect. Our family has its arguments and struggles. I do not claim that our family is the way it is because of a formula. In hard times, we simply cried out. We sought the Lord and sometimes we had to wait for the answer, making us cry out even more.

I believe marriage and families are under attack and I think this is worth fighting for!

So, here is Day 1 of praying…

God first! (I always read my Bible in the morning.)

Myself: Praying that I would be an encouraging wife. I pray my words would bring life, not death to my husband and kids.

Spouse: Praying for his spiritual walk, that he would be the Godly man you have called him to be. That he would be able to show love to me and the kids. This includes being able to say “no” when he needs to and to discipline in a manner that is firm but loving.

Children: Today I am praying for their spiritual walks as well. That they would have their own relationship with God, so they can combat the lies this world sells them.
(Even though our children are older, I still pray for them everyday.)

“…and what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8

 

 

 

christianity

Deep Roots

“…He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water that brings forth its fruit in its season…” Psalm 1:3

I just finished the book Through the Gates of Splendor by Elisabeth Elliot. I have heard the Jim Elliot story many times especially being a homeschool mom. We tend to make it a point to study missionaries to encourage us in our own journeys. 

At this time in my life and living in Mexico as a missionary myself, I thought it would be great to dive a little deeper and read about the people who truly lived out what they believed. Thus the reason for reading Elisabeth Elliot’s story and where it all began. 

Her husband along with four other men were killed by a local tribe of natives in South America. They were trying to make missionary contact and to spread the gospel of Christ. It is a remarkable story of dying to self for all those involved.

I sit in awe at the widows’ response. Barbara Youderian wrote: “I want to be free of self pity. It is a tool of Satan to rot away a life..the lord has closed our hearts to grief and hysteria, and filled in with His perfect peace.”

So often self pity is our go to response and here we see a woman who clearly has every fleshly right to have self pity, yet she wants nothing to do with it. Amazing! 

I want to have deep roots like these women did. I don’t want to be tossed to and fro by the waves of this life. Elisabeth wrote: “God is God. If He is God, He is worthy of my worship and my service. I will find rest nowhere but in His will, and that will is infinitely, immeasurably, unspeakably beyond my largest notions of what He is up to.” 

I was encouraged to keep fighting the fight…even when it’s difficult. To keep asking, keep seeking, keep knocking. He will direct me and if I get off course He loves me so much He will redirect me to His perfect will if I allow Him to.

Yes, trials will come. Yes, we will have conflict. But, He is bigger than all of those things and it’s through those trials that we become refined, shining Christ light for all to see!

Uncategorized

Are we the Same?

Two women. One from the United States and one from Mexico. Did we know our paths would cross one day? No! But, I am so glad they did. My life is forever changed. Are we the same? In some ways, yes. In other ways, no. Her life much harder than I could ever imagine. Some would look at me and say I am far better off than the other woman. Some would say I was born into privilege. But what makes me any better than anyone else? Because I was born in a country where life is much easier? Because I was born in the US? How much different my life would be if I was born in a third world country. Why was I the lucky one to be born in North America? But, am I really the blessed one? Sometimes I question if I am truly fortunate. The other woman able to take one moment at a time; to be focused on what is truly important, family. Me, so busy with life and not able to relax without feeling guilty. Questions that stir in my mind as I sit watching, talking, and waiting among the beautiful people here in a Mexico.

christianity

Send Me!

“Whom shall I send, and who will  go for Us?” Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.”
-Isaiah 6:8

I was reading Isaiah chapter 6 and was overtaken with the beginning of the chapter. The setting is that King Uzziah died and Isaiah saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lifted up. Seraphim stood above and they cried to another “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; The whole earth is full of His glory!”

Isaiah then said, “Woe is me, for I am undone! Because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; For my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.” Then one of the seraphim flew to Isaiah, having in his hand a live coal which he had taken with the tongs from the altar and he touched Isaiah’s mouth with it, and said: “Behold this has touched your lips, your iniquity is taken away, and your sin purged.”

Imagine to hear those wonderful words, “Your sin purged!” Yet, once we come to the mercy of Jesus and realize that our sin is completely washed white as snow, we can live and know that our iniquity is taken away! We start the sanctification process – a lifetime of becoming more and more like our savior, getting rid of our cold stony heart and replacing it with a heart of flesh.

I realized I used to believe, woe is me. I have so much sin in my life, I am unworthy to worship at the feet of my Lord and Savior. However, now I am at a place where I am free of my past and feel like I imagine Isaiah felt. Here am I send me! With excitement in my heart, to be chosen by God to encourage others in their daily walk with the Lord.

Father, thank you for your mercy and forgiveness, so I can come before you and worship at the throne, clean and spotless in your sight. With excitement I go forth to spread the good news to others that they too, can be washed white as snow and worship you forever!

 

christianity

“For Such a Time as This”

“Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” Then Esther told them to reply to Mordecai: “Go gather all the Jews who are present in Shushan, and fast for me; neither eat nor drink for three days, night or day. My maids and I will fast likewise, And so I will go to the king, which is against the law; and if I perish, I perish.” Esther 4:14-16

As I read these verses I was overwhelmed with how Esther handled the situation. Her people were going to be killed. She wasn’t sure what her role was in all of this. Mordecai had said, “Who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” Those words are so meaningful. Esther didn’t ask to become queen. She knew that God had opened a door for her, not knowing exactly why. Now it seems that everything was falling into place and I can just picture her mind reeling with thoughts of, “Wow, maybe this is the reason I am the queen. I am in a position where I can help my people.” Of course, this is just speculation, but you can almost feel what she was thinking because her reply was amazing.

She didn’t get upset and go immediately into the king’s chambers. She asked all the Jews in Shushan to fast and pray along with her maids and herself; fasting and praying for three days and three nights. She was bathing the situation in prayer. The ramifications of going before the king without being called, possibly meant death. Esther understood what going before the king could mean for her. Life or death. She reconciled this and had peace about what she was to do. She fasted and prayed. After doing this, she fully understood that her life would be in God’s hands. If He willed her to live – then it would be so. If He willed her to die – then He would allow it.

This spoke to me in such a spiritual way. If I go before our Lord and Savior and He asks me to do something that will “make waves” or even be illegal in our country, would I respond the way Esther did? Would I first fast and pray, seeking His will for the situation? I would hope that my response would be just as godly as Esther’s.

Many times on the mountain where we lived, I had to seek God’s face and see what he required for the day. Sometimes it was just trusting that he would provide food for our family, or money for gas to get down the mountain, or the words to speak to a tortured soul. Always trusting that he would provide and knowing whatever the outcome – He had a plan and I could rest in His peace.

If you’ve read the story of Esther in the Bible, you know that it worked out very well for her. She was able to go before the king, ask him to dinner, and share what was going to happen to her people. Through her, God saved the Jews from being annihilated.

Lord, my desire is to go before You with everything. Help me to seek Your face, not only when tough times come, but when things are going smoothly as well. I know I was created, “For such a time as this.” You have a plan for my life and I want to be able to trust you completely. Amen.

christianity

God Cares About the Little Things…

Indeed, the very hairs on your head are all numbered. Do not fear; You are more valuable than many sparrows. Luke 12:7

I have been collecting a dish set for a while now and almost have all of the pieces. I’ve been looking in thrift stores, antique stores, and online websites. I have found quite a few pieces and was looking for the sugar bowl to go with the creamer that I have. I was becoming quite obsessed. I found myself going to thrift stores even when I had no other reason to go, but just to look for the tiny bowl. I was enjoying the treasure hunt, but it was becoming disappointing and the search was turning into something that I did not intend.

One day, my daughter asked if we could go to the thrift store. She was looking for something specific for her room. As we were walking through the store, I was thinking about various things and if there was anything that I needed to purchase. I was walking through the shoe aisle, when I realized I hadn’t been to the dishes section of the store. I slowly meandered over to where the plates and cups were, but didn’t find any of the dishes that belonged to my set. “Oh well.” I thought. “The only thing I need to complete my set is the sugar bowl.” I then walked through the section where some of the other odd and ends were kept, such as serving platters and crystal vases. I began slowly looking on one of the glass shelves and way in the back, something caught my eye. There before me was the sugar bowl I needed to complete my set! I couldn’t believe it. There it was. All by itself, without the creamer. When I gave up searching, that was when I found the treasure I was looking for.

When I arrived home, I thought about the day more intently and realized how much God loves me. He blessed me with a little blessing that turned out to be a huge reward. He loves me so much that He even cares about sugar bowls. Does God really care about little things like that? You bet He does! This example showed me how much He cares about every detail of my life. Some might say it was just a coincidence. I don’t believe so. I believe God wanted to show me His unfailing love for me that day.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for your unfailing love and that you know and care about all the details of my life. You are so amazing and I can’t deny who you are. When I doubt, please help me to remember all the little blessings you give me each day…even little sugar bowls.